Empedia is a new community-based encyclopedia that takes Wikipedia articles and throws personal and experience-based input from its users into the mix.
Built on top of Wikipedia’s API, Empedia’s goal is to complement original Wikipedia articles by letting users add personal, and unique information. For example, the Wikipedia article on the Google search engine could be appended with information on how the founders are in person, what it’s like to work there and other titillating tidbits not suited to the original Wikipedia way of doing things.
“The ultimate goal with Empedia is to extract unique information that exists within every person’s mind and publish that next to already existing information,” says Joakim Fischer, co-founder of Empedia. “If we can accomplish that in a broad manner, this service will be revolutionary for information findings online. We want to make Empedia accessible for everyone, everywhere and always.”
First up, you can either create a new account on Empedia, or connect using your Facebook credentials. Once you’re in, you search in the usual way – e.g. enter your keywords and you’ll be presented with a list of potentially relevant articles.
Empedia articles takes the main opening gambit from the Wikipedia article, rather than the full piece, and gives a platform for users to leave comments and personal experiences, as well as post polls and ask questions.
As you can see with this article on Badoo, someone has clearly been receiving emails from the social network without having signed up to use it, so they ask below how the company is able to do that.
Empedia has also found the support of Jan Ainali, chairman of Wikimedia Sweden. “Empedia makes clever use of the Wikipedia API and I personally think it could complement Wikipedia in many positive ways,” he says. “We both have the same purposes with our services – to provide knowledge openly and freely to everyone. I am looking forward to see Empedia grow and become the great service I believe it will be.”
It’s an interesting initiative for sure, but as we’ve seen all too many times on the World Wide Web, very little reason is needed for very personal gripes to enter into the fray. If Empedia is to take off in any way, it could find itself fighting a lot of fires.
Empedia is a Sweden-based startup and it’s currently still in beta.